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31 Days of Gratitude and today I’m grateful for learning.

inspirational quotes

You are not too old and it is not too late

I was never a very bright scholar at school. I remember my sister usurping me when I was doing homework. When my Mother schooled me in arithmetic my sister would always pipe up with the answers before I had a chance to even think about them. She had a bent for math, I didn’t. I was 7, she was 4. I was pretty average at school, usually scraping through with 60% or so, my favourite subjects were English, Geography and History. They still are. But I can add numbers in my head…impresses my daughter no end. LOL

I left school very young at 16, and started work just before my 17th birthday. Even at work I wasn’t very bright, but I learned as I went and eventually over the years I progressed from being a very bad typist (using 2 fingers which gained me a lot of raps on the knuckles from my manager), to gaining a Distinction in Credit Management when I was 47…only took 30 years!! Nothing slow about me at all LOL

I stumbled into my career and the fact that I ended up in Credit Management had nothing to do with my math skills, but rather my ongoing learning….every new job I got, I took on more duties and learned more and more. My success in Credit Management came from my OCD when it comes to keeping things in order and being specific and having a winning way with people on the phone; persuading them to part with their money (I loved that aspect). I learned a lot over the years and went on to attain a position as a Credit Manager managing the Debtor books for a group of 5 companies and a staff of 10 ladies. I loved every minute of that job (except when my boss was being a shit).

And then just for fun I gave it all up (the company closed down), and travelled to Ireland which is where my real education began. I learned so much about history, lifestyle, and freedom. I loved living there so much I only returned to South Africa long enough to get my Ancestral Visa and head straight back to the UK never to return to SA on a permanent basis (I’m now a British citizen).

My mind has expanded beyond my comprehension and more recently I’ve had the ‘pleasure’ of learning about Crypto Currency. Jeez. If ever you want a learning curve on a big scale, try getting involved with Crypto Currency. My brain!!!! I had such a headache last night when I went to bed.

My daughter recently bought into Bitcoin. Now I had and have been very sceptical about Bitcoin and although I had been invited to buy into it last year when it was still at $200 a coin, I refrained…mostly because I didn’t have a clue what it was and I was afraid of investing in something so new…my loss as it turns out.

However, as mentioned my daughter sprang a surprise on me last week by sending me a message to say she’d bought into Bitcoin. I was like wft?? Seriously!? Anyhow, long discussion/discourse short, after many messages and discussions back and forth and because I trust my daughter implicitly, I decided to take the plunge and buy into it. Especially now that it’s at $8,000 + HAHAHAHA The story of my life. I always end up watching the bandwagon heading off into the distance saying ‘I wish I had of….’ Like the time in the early 1990’s when I had the opportunity to buy shares in a newly fledged Mobile phone company (whose name shall remain unmentioned), and I said “No! They’ll (mobile phones) never last” or when Facebook launched their shares…I was like nahhh. Well the missed lessons of the past haunt me still and I still miss out on technological happenings.

So when Bitcoin first arrived on the scene…I was like “Nope, not for me thanks”. I remember one of my now ex Facebook friends said to me “I can make you rich”. Well alarm bells went off in my head (a carry over from the Tony Robbins era), and I just said sorry not now. He unfriended me. His loss.

But, since I trust my daughter explicitly, and since I know she is very careful with her money, after she invested I thought…okay how much can I comfortably invest without feeling too much angst. I settled on 3.5 days of work and that’s the amount I invested.

All fine and good….and with her help and guidance and downloading apps I’d never heard of, I bought a VERY tiny portion of 1 Bitcoin. And then the learning began. Now I recognise most of the words they use, I understand what they mean individually, but in the context they are used in relation to Crypto Currency, I’ve said ‘wtf’ a lot this last few days!!! LOL. I may as well be reading Russian for all that any of it means anything to me…..

But I’m learning. And it has been fascinating. I learned about how to buy a TINY portion of a Bitcoin, about opening a ‘wallet’, about ‘selling’ (and how they charge a commission that makes my heart skip a beat), about watching the graphs (if you want to have a nervous breakdown…..that’s a good place to start), about buying another up and coming Crypto Currency using a Bitcoin. Holy Moly. Talk about a curve…those graphs have nothing on this. It’s scary, and thrilling and invigorating and I have learned once again that I have seriously latent issues with and about money. Most specifically the loss of money. The ABBA song ‘Money, Money, Money’ springs to mind.

I’m quite happy to take on more difficult jobs, to work and save up £1000 over 18 months so that I can take a walk across Portugal and Spain, but as soon as I watch the graphs and see my investment going down….eish. Painful. Red is bad, Green is good!!

So I’ve now I’m ‘learning’ to not watch the graphs…they change by the second. I check at 8am and make a note of the value (I had a spreadsheet up within hours of buying my first coin), and then at 10pm I make a note of the values and that is it. I’ve learned how to set ‘alerts’ and what a good alert is. I’m now learning about the terminology and how it applies to this crazy world. (okay, so I lied…I check at 1pm too 😉 )

There are apps galore; crypto news, crypto trackers, coin market, binance, crypto signals, bitcoin news, ico market….and on and on. Who knew? It’s a whole new world. I’ve only just learned how to operate instagram for goodness sake!! Oh and if you look at the apps on google play…right next to the crypto currency apps you’ll find an app for ‘meditation & relaxation’ – someone knows their market LOL

Meanwhile I’ve been reading as much as possible on Crypto Currency. Did you know there are over 750 different Crypto Currencies?? With names like YOYO & EOS & QSP & ADA & QTUM and yeah TNT!!! There’s even a SALT!! LOL I mean seriously, it’s insane. But I’m ignoring the lot except for the 3 I’ve invested in.

At 62, there’s only so much excitement a brain and heart can take.

Ever feel like you’re living in a Matrix?

Today, even though it’s doing my head in, I’m grateful for learning…..who knows where it will take me this time!!learning about crypto currency

31 Days of Gratitude – Day 4

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Today I’m grateful for my laptop. It seems like a fairly trivial thing to be grateful for, and yes I realise it’s not only a non-essential for life, but it’s also a staple of a consumer society.

However, my laptop has been invaluable to me. I remember when I got my very first one…about 14 years ago. I was living in London, working as a Carer then as now, and between my sister and I we decided I needed a laptop rather than going into internet cafes all the time.

I’d started blogging by then and it was a pain having to download my blog to an external hard-drive, then walk to the internet cafe during my break, then login and download over an insecure connection and finalise the blog. Time consuming and not very secure.

So the decision was made to buy a laptop. My sister suggested a Dell and since I had nothing to compare it to, and had no knowledge of laptops and how they worked, I said go ahead. In due course they delivered the laptop, and boy was it heavy….it still is.

And then the fun began…..first I had to learn ‘how to do set up’ ergo charging the battery, setting up the account, and going through the set up process….this I had to be talked through by my brother-in-law from Ireland. That is how much of a novice I was. I used it for 3 years till it began to go so slowly it may as well have gone backwards. Since then I’ve come leaps and bounds.  Once I decided to get a new computer I took out a contract with my network provider and I’ve upgraded my computer contract twice in the intervening 10 years. I try to make them last till they collapse (which is what happened to the last one 3 years ago). My current model has lasted well over 3 years……touch wood.

The reason I’m grateful for my laptop is that it has allowed me to reach into the wonderful and sometimes scary world of the internet. I’ve since learned to build a website, download, edit and upload photos and videos, create videos from images and progress to the various photo-sharing apps. I’ve learned how to use Google to find out just about anything I set my mind to, even sometimes incredibly obscure questions…I use my laptop to plan my Caminos by using Google Maps and accessing relevant websites.

My laptop has allowed me to create a 2nd website (which is where you are reading this article) and yesterday I managed to ‘crack a code’. If you look at the top right hand side you’ll see a button for the SA Blog Awards…well, when I tried to paste their code into the wordpress ‘widget’ it kept telling me that there were 6 errors I had to fix first before it could save. I was like ‘wtf’ ..seriously!!!

Anyway after about 15 minutes of stress, I hopped onto google and within 30 minutes I had fixed the errors and voila the badge was up.  I was well pleased 🙂

I have learned so much since those early days when I lifted the lid on my Dell in 2003, I have travelled vicariously through reading other peoples blogs, created relationships on Facebook, Tweet for China, loaded images via instagram, flickr and pinterest and as a result of this one of my images was chosen to feature in a book about the Queens of England. 🙂

I’ve learned how to create spreadsheets (I’m the spreadsheet queen) LOL, how to edit images in powerpoint, how to create videos using movie maker, I’ve written and created 3 books on Bookwright and so much else it’s staggering.

Having my laptop has stopped me from going crazy when I’m in a stressful position at work by allowing me to be creative, to write and to communicate. I am able to keep up with world affairs, with latest trends in politics and travel and investments. It’s allowed me to share my stories and photos of far-flung places and taken me on the road to Project 101.

I am grateful for my laptop. It is my most ‘prized possession’

31 Days of Gratitude – Day 1

31 Days of Gratitude – Day 2

31 Days of Gratitude – Day 3

 

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What is it about the early morning smell of percolating coffee that sets the olifactory senses in a whirl and the tastebuds drooling! 

I arrived back in Highgate this morning (Wedn June 2nd), a glorious summer day in London, bright and early (too early), so I stopped off at Costa Coffee to hook-up to the internet.  As I walked through the doors I was assailed by the heavenly smell of percolating coffee.

Costa coffee in Highgate

 

I often visit Costa Coffee in Highgate (one of my favourite places in London) and meet up with friends, my business coach and sometimes my daughter (although we more often go to High Tea of Highgate).  Coming back to the same place again and again is like the feeling you get when wearing a favourite jumper…warm and cosy, and I have been back so often that I have qualified for a Costa ‘Coffee Club’ loyalty card.

Costa Club loyalty card

 

Although I am a dedicated tea drinker, my favourite being Twinings English Breakfast, my day cannot start without the first mug of tea; like nectar on the tongue – there is something about the smell of percolating coffee that assails my senses.

So here I am hooked-up and hooked-on to the internet, enjoying the cosy ambiance of fellow patrons sitting relaxing, the quiet buzz of conversation and the heavenly smell of my cappucino.

Cappucino with chocolate sprinkled on top 🙂

 

and yes I do take four sugars with my coffee, but I make up for it by not having sugar in my tea 🙂

I am back in Highgate for the next three months – in sha’a Allah, and love the feeling of visiting the same place again and again;

warm and cosy inside Costa coffee shop

 

That is the corner of my suitcase you can see in the foreground!  I do indeed live like a gypsy, although these days it feels more like a tortoise 🙂

And just to make it perfect, in the background I can hear the sounds of ‘Imagine’ by John Lennon 🙂

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